Flemming Rasmussen, the producer who worked on a few of Metallica‘s albums in the 1980s, has a theory on why the bass was turned down on …And Justice for All. 

Rasmussen first worked with Metallica on their sophomore album Ride the Lightning, and the band worked with him again on Master of Puppets and …And Justice for All. The latter is known for having an infamously low bass volume to the point where it’s hardly audible at all.

Metallica brought Jason Newsted in as their new bassist in October of 1986, just a month after the death of Cliff Burton. Newsted has admitted in interviews that he “was fucking livid” the first time he heard the finished version of their 1988 album — his first with the group — because of how low the bass was.

Rasmussen has touched on the record’s bass volume in the past, but in a recent YouTube interview with Daniel Sarkissian, he shared a theory as to why he thought James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich wanted the bass to practically sound absent.

“I think — but this is purely speculation — I think that they did it to get some kind of reaction from Jason. Because what they hated the most about Jason was that he was a fan,” the producer said.

READ MORE: Metallica’s ‘…And Justice for All’: 10 Facts You May Not Know

“He was never disagreeing or anything, or stating his own opinion. I think they were waiting for him to kind of state his place in the band… I think they probably did it to get a reaction, and when it didn’t come, that was the way the album turned out.”

Rasmussen recalled that Newsted just accepted the album the way it was, likely because he was just thrilled to be a member of Metallica.

Watch the full clip below.

Metallica Producer Has a Theory on Why the Bass Was Turned Down on ‘…And Justice For All’

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